Dear Public i:
During a recent visit, I came across your publication. My first reaction was that your content is not particularly independent, but rather predictable in representing a particular point of view. But that is not why I write. I write in response to Belden Fields’ piece in the November issue, “Universities and the ‘War on Terrorism’”.
I agree with everything Fields wrote. And the 1950s were a particularly odious time for diversity of thought in higher education. But Fields tells only half the story. He ignores the fact that the tactics he deplores also are employed by left-leaning faculty and administrators against many in the academy who may be deemed, for lack of a better term, “politically incorrect”, or who may not share the “appropriate” world view of some colleges and departments.
My point simply is that diversity of thought on campus has been a victim of more than one perspective on the political spectrum, and most likely will continue to be.
Associate Professor Emeritus
Fort Collins, Colorado
Editor’s note: We of the Public i invited Derry Eynon to write an article identifying instances of university administrations who have engaged in punitive action against right-wing professors because of what they have said or written. We felt that if the rights of such professors to academic freedom and freedom of speech were being curtailed in a manner similar to the way in which the speech of left-wing professors is being censored at present, our readers should be informed of the specifics. Professor Eynon declined our invitation to submit an article for publication.
For more info:
War on Campus by David Glenn 12/3/01
This article treats some of the incidents, including one at City University of New York, which generated this statement from the faculty organization.
The mother of all attempts to chill dissident views was issued by the DC based American Council of Trustees and Alumni. This group was founded by second lady and novelist Lynne Cheney, who is also known for the chill she imparted while heading the NEH (National Endowment for the Humanities).
This is a 67 Mb file.
For an excellent short critique, check out Lynne Cheney’s campus crusade